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Griffins Make Texas Toast 6-3
Special teams key wild win...
By Jason Kasiorek
November 16, 2016

The Griffins powerplay was a double edged sword in the teams' 6-3 win over the visiting Texas Stars. While Grand Rapids capitalized for two man-advantage goals in seven chances, they also gave up a pair of shorthanded goals. Matt Ford's first of the season was also scored one second after a penalty expires so for all intents and purposes was also scored on the powerplay. Jared Coreau made 26 stops to record his AHL best 11th win.

Martin Frk had a great chance in the opening minute when he snuck in on a loose puck and had a shot that surprised Desrosiers from the top of the slot. Frk opened the scoring a few minutes later when he rifled a heavy shot from the point on the powerplay that changed directions and found its way into the Texas net for a 1-0 lead. A flurry of shots for Grand Rapids with several quality scoring chances as the Griffins pushed the pace. Robbie Russo fired a low slow shot from the point that Lorito got a stick on and tipped past Desrosiers to push the lead to 2-0. Frk jamming away at the side of the net, got knocked down touching off a scrum and leading to another Griffins powerplay. Texas had a great shorthanded chances but Morin missed the net with the shot. Grand Rapids having man advantage problems as Coreau tried to win a footrace for a loose puck on a shorthanded chance and didn't make it on time allowing an ugly empty net goal. GR got it right back when Ford in the deep slot, fired a rocket through bodies and into the net for his 1st of the season. Shots on goal: GR 17 - Tex 7.

Lagace started the 2nd period between the pipes for the Stars as Desrosiers yielded. Texas cut the lead back to one, scoring yet another shorthanded goal, as Street flubbed a pass out of the zone and Morin capitalized. The Griffins dodged a bullet, brutal Paetsch giveaway next to Coreau but the Texas shooter didn't get a shot off. Aubry with a great chance in front but banged the puck off Lagace's pads. Another GR powerplay and a lot of time spent in their own end - they may need to rethink the 5 forward man-advantage unit. Great puck movement by Grand Rapids, and Bertuzzi finally finished it off by banking a shot in off Lagace to make it 4-2. Shots on goal: GR 15 - Tex 10.

Renouf with a big hit that sent a Stars' puck carrier flying. Dickinson smoked Callahan with a brutal hit that was clearly meant to hurt him and he was assessed a penalty. The feisty winger eventually got back up and did not leave the game. Callahan was all alone back door but the pass from Street was just out of his reach. Frk had a big rip, going down on knee ala Brett Hull, but just missed the net. Joe Hicketts took away a sure goal, making a stick save in the crease of an empty net with Coreau out of the play. Colin Campbell notched his 3rd of the season in front on a sick feed from Aubry. The Stars were not done yet as VanBrabant fired a puck on Coreau from a bad angle as he circled the net that just snuck through for a goal. Texas pulled Lagace for the extra attacker with two and a half minutes left, but it backfired as Campbell scored into the empty net for his 2nd of the game to make the game 6-3. Louis-Marc Aubry put a shot on net just after the final whistle touching off a big scrum to the side of the net that threatened to boil over. Shots on goal: GR 9 - Tex 12. For the Game: GR 41 - Tex 29.

Callahan - Street - Lorito
Bertuzzi - Nosek -Frk
Svechnikov - Criscuolo - #55 Ford
Borkowski - Aubry - Campbell

Paetsch - Russo
Lashoff - Jensen
Renouf - Hicketts

Starter: Coreau
Backup: Pasquale

#11 Cleary - Veteran
#23 Turgeon
#26 Tangradi - Hand
#29 Sadowy
#44 Allen

Callahan - Bertuzzi - Lorito
Frk - Street

Ford - Svechnikov - Criscuolo
Hicketts - Russo

Nosek- Campbell
Lashoff - Jensen

Callahan - Street
Paetsch - Russo


Matt Ford made his season debut, recovering from a muscle strain and scored his first goal of the season. He had a good night and had several good chances. He also used his size well and brought some grit.

In what is becoming a familiar refrain, Joe Hicketts had another solid outing. He makes good decisions and always seems to be in the right place to make a play. Despite his small stature he makes big hits and is adept at angling people out of the play with a well placed hip. He showed off his powerplay prowess tonight changing positions on the ice to trip up opponents and doing a great job of keeping the puck alive.

Martin Frk had as much jump as I have ever seen. He was involved early and did a great job of keeping his feet moving to always be at speed to move the puck. He got flattened at one point and was slow to get up, but came right back and rang a shot off the crossbar to show he wasn't intimidated.

I can't say enough about the chemistry between Louis-Marc Aubry and Colin Campbell. They are such an effective pairing on the 4th line. They seem to play better together, and give the opponents fits cycling the puck in the offensive zone generating chances.

Official Game Sheet